Governing Board

BOARD CHAIR

Terrence O’Brien
Governor’s Appointment, Public Member

Terrence O’Brien, 65, of Sacramento, is a former deputy director of the California Energy Commission. He has worked as a consultant to the Bureau of Land Management on renewable energy issues and was a senior consultant at Environmental Resources Management until March of 2017. Mr. O’Brien spent five decades hiking in the Sierra as well as California’s other mountain ranges and deserts. He earned a master’s degree in geography from the University of California, Davis and a bachelor’s degree in geography from the University of California, Berkeley.

SECRETARY, CALIFORNIA NATURAL RESOURCES AGENCY

John Laird
Secretary, California Natural Resources Agency

John Laird was appointed California Secretary for Natural Resources by Governor Jerry Brown on Jan. 5, 2011. He has spent 35 years in public service, including 23 years as an elected official.

The son of teachers and raised in Vallejo, Laird graduated with honors in politics from the University of California Santa Cruz in 1972. He then served on the district staff of U.S. Representative Jerome Waldie, and as a budget analyst for the Santa Cruz County Administrator.

In 1981, Laird was elected to the Santa Cruz City Council, and served nine years until term limits ended his council service in 1990. He was a two-term mayor from 1983 to 1984 and from 1987 to 1988. During his local government service, he served as a board member for local transit, transportation, water planning, and regional government agencies. Laird was the executive director of the Santa Cruz AIDS Project from 1991 to 1994 and an elected member of the Cabrillo College Board of Trustees from 1994 to 2002.

In 2002, Laird was elected to represent the 27th Assembly District in the California Assembly, which includes portions of Santa Cruz, Monterey and Santa Clara Counties. He was re-elected in 2004 and again in 2006, when he received more than 70 percent of the vote. At the beginning of his second term, Laird joined the Assembly leadership team when Assembly Speaker Fabian Núñez named him chair of the Budget Committee, a position to which he was reappointed by Assembly Speaker Karen Bass in 2008.

While serving the maximum three terms in the Assembly, Laird authored 82 bills that were signed into law. These bills established the landmark Sierra Nevada Conservancy, restored community college health services, expanded and clarified state civil rights protections, reformed the state mandates system, and significantly expanded water conservation.

Laird was a member of the State Integrated Waste Management Board from 2008 to 2009. Most recently, he taught state environmental policy at University of California Santa Cruz.

Laird has been a long-time resident of Santa Cruz with his spouse John Flores. He has traveled extensively, is fluent in Spanish, enjoys conducting family history research, and is a life-long Chicago Cubs fan.

SECRETARY, CALIFORNIA NATURAL RESOURCES AGENCY – DESIGNEE

Julie Alvis
Designee for Secretary of California Natural Resources  

Julie Alvis serves as Deputy Assistant Secretary for Administration and Finance with the California Natural Resources Agency. Prior to joining the Natural Resources Agency in 2008, Julie served as board liaison to the California Bay-Delta Authority, as an analyst working on watershed management issues, and as an editor for various publishing firms. She is a graduate of the University of California at Davis, and is a life-long resident of Placer County.

DIRECTOR, DEPARTMENT OF FINANCE

Director, Department of Finance  
Keely Martin Bosler  

Keely Martin Bosler was appointed as Director of the California Department of Finance by Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. in August 2018, and serves as the Governor’s chief fiscal policy advisor. Prior to her appointment, she served as Cabinet Secretary in the Office of the Governor from 2016 to 2018. Director Bosler previously served as Chief Deputy Director for Budget at the Department of Finance from 2013 to 2016.

Bosler was Staff Director for the California State Senate Budget and Fiscal Review Committee from 2010 to 2013, where she was a consultant from 2004 to 2009. She also served as Associate Director for fiscal services over the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation’s Budget Management Branch from 2009 to 2010. She started her career at the California Legislative Analyst’s Office, where she served as a Fiscal and Policy Analyst from 2000 to 2004.

Bosler is a graduate of California State University, Chico with a bachelor’s degree in Agricultural Business. She also holds a master’s degree in Applied Economics from Cornell University.

Bosler grew up on a small dairy farm in Siskiyou County. She lives in Sacramento and is married to R. Mitchell Bosler and has two young daughters, Alessandra and Henrietta.

DIRECTOR, DEPARTMENT OF FINANCE – DESIGNEE

Director, Department of Finance – Designee
Jacqueline Wong-Hernandez  

Jacqueline Wong-Hernandez is the Director of Legislation for the California Department of Finance. In this capacity, she advises the Director and the Governor’s Office in the planning, implementation, administration and evaluation of fiscal and legislative issues affecting the budgetary process and the state’s fiscal condition.  

Ms. Wong-Hernandez was previously a principal consultant to the Senate Appropriations Committee, working on K-12 and higher education issues from 2010 to 2015. From 2008 to 2010, she worked on public safety, judiciary, and human services issues for the Committee. Ms. Wong-Hernandez was a 2007-08 Senate Fellow in the Senate Budget and Fiscal Review Committee. Prior to working in the Legislature, she worked in non-profit organizations focused on improving public education.  

Ms. Wong-Hernandez earned a Bachelor’s degree in Politics from Pomona College.

LOCAL GOVERNMENT APPOINTMENTS

Sherri Brennan
South Central Subregion
Tuolumne County Supervisor

Elizabeth Cavasso
North Subregion
Modoc County Board of Supervisors

Randy Fletcher 
Central Subregion 
Yuba County Supervisor  

Randy Fletcher was elected to the Yuba County Board of Supervisor in 2014 and took office on January 5, 2015. In 2016 was elected Vice Chair.  

Randy and his wife Kathy have lived in Browns Valley since 1983. They also own 100 acres of timberland and the historic Chestnut Grove in Brownsville which has been in the family since 1955. Randy and Kathy have two children, Jennifer and Casey, and five grandchildren.  

Randy was with the Yuba City Police Department from 1965 – 1986 in various capacities from Cadet to Lieutenant. He was a Reserve Officer with Yuba County Sheriff’s Department from 1986 – 2000. Randy has owned an independent insurance brokerage, Fletcher & Associates Insurance, in Marysville since 1979.  

Randy graduated from Yuba City High School in 1967 and Yuba College in 1969. He received a Bachelor of Science degree in Criminal Justice from California State University, Sacramento, in 1971.  

Randy represents the County in his capacity as Supervisor on the following:  

  • Area 4 Agency on Aging
  • CA Association of Counties – Alternate
  • Finance and Administration Committee – Alternate
  • Human Services Committee
  • North Central Counties Consortium – Alternate
  • Protective Inspection Committee – Alternate
  • Sierra Nevada Conservancy – Alternate
  • Sierra-Sacramento Valley EMS – Alternate
  • Sutter Yuba Behavioral Health advisory Board – Alternate
  • Yuba County children’s Council
  • Yuba Sutter Chamber of Commerce
  • Yuba Sutter Economic Development Corp. Board of Directors
  • Yuba Sutter Transit Authority
  • Yuba County Disaster Council
  • Yuba County Public Facilities Corporation
  • Yuba County Redevelopment Agency
  • Yuba County Water Agency Board of Directors

Jeff Griffiths  
East Subregion  
Inyo County Supervisor  

 

Doug Teeter 
North Central Subregion 
Butte County Supervisor  

I am a long time resident of Paradise, CA. After graduation from Paradise High school I worked as a seasonal firefighter while earning a B.S. degree from CSU, San Diego.  

This led me into a career as a designer of technology products in the Bay Area. I pursued other career pathways as a paralegal, a property manager, and currently as a licensed, professional Fiduciary.  

I was elected in 2012, to the Butte County Board of Supervisors and was sworn-into office on January 7, 2013. In 2014 & 2015 I served as Chair of the Board of Supervisors. I am now in my second term as Supervisor for District 5.  

I am currently appointed by the Board of Supervisors as Representative to the Sierra Nevada Conservancy, the Rural County Representatives of CA (RCRC), the Butte County Fire Safe Council, the Butte County Association of Governments, and the Butte County Air Quality Management District, among others.  

I endeavor to have an active involvement in the community I serve through various organizations, such as; the Elks Lodge, the Paradise Friends of the Library, the Paradise Ridge Riders Motorcycle Club, the Paradise Pines Property Owners Association, and the Paradise Toastmasters on the Ridge, as well as, holding community based town hall forums to reach out to concerned constituents.  

Tom Wheeler  
South Subregion  
Madera County Supervisor  

Tom has been a resident of Eastern Madera County for five decades, having moved to the area as a teenager in 1958. His family settled in North Fork a year later, and he has continued to live there ever since. He is the proud father of three and grandfather of two.  

For 30 years, Tom managed the 4,500-acre Frank Wyle’s Circle W. Ranch. He also owns and manages his own, private business. He coached youth soccer for ten years. For more than eighteen years, has served as a trustee on various school boards including Sierra High School, North Fork Elementary School, and the Chawanakee and Minarets Boards. Tom is a recipient of the Golden Apple Award for Education and was selected North Fork Citizen of the Year, chaired the North Fork Loggers Jamboree for a number of years, and won the Champion Logger title five times.  

Tom was elected to the Madera County Board of Supervisors in 2006. Since then, he has strives to uphold his political ideology of conservation, property rights and common sense. Tom continues to support policies that help the people better their lives economically. He encourages business that brings well-paying jobs to our communities so young adults can afford to live here. He is also an adamant supporter of property rights.  

In addition, Tom believes a person should give back to the community. As such, Tom has been involved in numerous committees and organizations. Over the last thirty years, he was elected President of the California Association Resource Conservation District and President of the Coarsegold Resource Conservation District. Tom has been a member of the Eastern Madera County Water Oversight Advisory Committee, The General Plan Update Committee, the North Fork Community Development Council, Farm Service Agency Advisory Board and the Board of Directors of the Mountain Area Youth Soccer League.  

GOVERNOR’S APPOINTMENTS

John Brissenden  
Governor’s Appointment, Public Member  

Mr. Brissenden is the innkeeper of Sorensen’s Resort in Hope Valley, a destination resort near Lake Tahoe. He was elected to the Alpine Board of Supervisors and served from 1989 to 1993. Mr. Brissenden is a member of the Conservation Alliance, the Sierra Nevada Alliance, the California Chamber of Commerce, the Sierra Business Council, and the Sierra Club. He also serves as a member of the California State Parks OHV Commission. Mr. Brissenden earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of California, Santa Cruz.

Danny Wan  
Governor’s Appointment, Public Member

Danny Wan has been port attorney for the Port of Oakland since 2012, where he was a deputy port attorney from 2004 to 2008. He was the city attorney for the City of Morgan Hill from 2008 to 2012 and a member of the Oakland City Council from 2000 to 2004. Wan was an associate attorney at Foley and Lardner LLP from 1996 to 2000 and at Carroll, Burdick and McDonough LLP from 1993 to 1996. He earned a Juris Doctor degree from the University of California, Los Angeles School of Law.  

LEGISLATIVE APPOINTMENTS

Bob Johnston 
Senate Rules Committee Appointee  

Professor Emeritus, Dept. of Environmental Science and Policy
University of California, Davis  

As Professor Emeritus, Mr. Johnston continues to pursue four main areas of research: 

  1. urban growth analysis using his rule-based land use allocation model UPlan;
  2. basic and applied research using various urban economic models and travel models on the Sacramento region;  
  3. the review and critique of travel models and urban models for private and public clients; and  
  4. the application of the PECAS model to California.

His major interests lie in open space and terrestrial habitat protection, transportation and land use modeling, and regional planning support systems.  

Prior to his retirement, Professor Johnston taught courses in environmental planning, land use controls, environmental impact assessment, and urban modeling. He has an M.S. in Natural Resources Management from the University of Nevada, a Masters degree in Urban and Regional Planning from the University of Southern California, and a B.A. degree in Art History and Architecture from Dartmouth College.  

He was recently a member of a National Academy of Sciences committee on regional travel modeling practice in the U.S. Johnston is on the boards of the Sierra Nevada Conservancy and the Sierra Nevada Alliance. He is also a Truckee Town Planning Commissioner.  

Susana Reyes 
Speaker of the Assembly Appointee  

As Director of Low-Income Customer Access at L.A. Department of Water and Power, Susana Reyes uses equity as the foundation for developing strategies and initiatives that will allow low-income customers to effectively access energy and water efficiency programs and low-income discounts and rebates. Previously, she served as a Senior Analyst in L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti’s Sustainability Team where she ensured that policies and projects align with the goals of the Sustainable City Plan – a roadmap to the city’s environmental, economic, and equitable future. As the Mayor’s Electric Vehicle Liaison, she led the team which garnered a $1.6 million grant from the CA Air Resources Board for an EV car sharing pilot program in disadvantaged communities. Her career portfolio span across many areas including environmental justice, air quality, sustainable procurement, zero waste, and corporate performance measures. Previous stints included a pioneering role as Manager of the City of L.A.’s Facilities Recycling Program.  

Susana Reyes is the current Vice President of the National Sierra Club Board of Directors and serves as a member of the first-ever all female Executive Committee in the organization’s 125 –year history. As a Sierra Club Board member since 2012, Susana has led numerous grassroots campaigns and has seen how an appreciation of public lands and resources threads its way through all levels of politics. She aims to lead a powerful and inclusive Sierra Club on a journey towards a clean energy future and a just and equitable environment for all. Susana has also been a board member of the Los Angeles League of Conservation Voters since 2004.  

Susana graduated magna cum laude from Saint Paul College with a Communications degree and earned a Civic Engagement Leadership and Management certification from the UCLA Anderson School of Management.

NON-VOTING LIAISON ADVISORS

Barnie Gyant 
U.S. Secretary of Agriculture’s Appointee 
U.S. Forest Service  

Current Position: Deputy Regional Forester for Resources for the Pacific Southwest Region (Region 5), USDA Forest Services since July 2012. In this capacity Barnie oversees the areas of Program Development and Budget, Ecosystems Management, Ecosystems Planning, Information Management, and Tribal Relations. The 18 National Forests in California are collectively known as Region 5 of the National Forest System. Region 5 also includes responsibility and oversight of State and Private Forestry in Hawaii and U.S. territories in the Pacific.  

Previous Positions: Barnie’s experience includes Deputy Director of Ecosystem Management in Region 5, Acting Director, Ecosystem Management, and work assignments as a Forest Supervisor, Deputy Forest Supervisor, District Ranger, Deputy District Ranger, and Resources Program Manager. Earlier in his career, Barnie worked as a Fisheries Biologist. He has extensive experience as a line officer and natural resources manager for the past 20 years working on eight different national forests and in four different regions.  

Education: Barnie earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Environmental Biology from East Carolina University.  

Woody Smeck
U.S. Secretary of the Interior’s Appointment
U.S. National Parks

Este Stifel
U.S. Secretary of the Interior’s Appointee
U.S. Bureau of Land Management  

Este Stifel started her position in Bureau of Land Management (BLM), California State Director’s Office December 2010, after four years serving as the Lower Potomac Field Station Manager for the BLM-Eastern States.  

In her role as Senior Technical Advisor, Este is charged with coordinating statewide strategic planning efforts; policy review and development; and issues and assignments that directly support State Director resource management initiatives.  

Prior to joining the BLM, Este held several positions with The Nature Conservancy on the East Coast, including as the Southern Blue Ridge Project Director. She also held positions in the private sector in marketing and production.  

So what spurred her to work for the BLM?  

“A love of the outdoors made public land management a great fit,” she says. “I was intrigued by the multiple use mission of BLM. I was looking for a new challenge and BLM offered plenty of challenging opportunities.”  

When she can, Este enjoys playing in the outdoors, including bicycling, kayaking and snowboarding. Her love of the outdoors also played a role in her moving out West.  

“There are three reasons why I am thrilled to have joined BLM California,” she says. “One, the people; two, the variety of work; and three, the recreational options. The BLM staff in California are awesome; knowledgeable, dedicated and fun. The work variety will spin your head, and I love not knowing what new or different issue will pop up.”  

Este grew up in the Tidewater area of Virginia, and holds Masters of Environmental Management and Business Administration degrees from Duke University. Her undergraduate work in environmental studies was completed at Trinity College in Hartford, Conn.